Cake artist Jack Phillips will appeal a Colorado trial court’s decision, after the court ruled Tuesday against the Masterpiece Cake Shop owner, ordering him to pay a $500 fine for refusing to design a cake celebrating a transgender person’s so-called transition. Phillips, who made national headlines and whose case reached the Supreme Court in 2012 after he refused to design a cake for a same-sex union, said celebrating a transition would also go against his religious convictions as a devout Christian.
Autumn Scardina, an attorney and a biological male who purports to be a woman, sought out the bakery to design a transition cake following media coverage of the Supreme Court case. When Scardina called the shop to ask for a pink and blue cake to celebrate the transition, the attorney was denied because it would “violate Mr. Phillips’s religious beliefs to send a message to anyone that he would celebrate a gender transition.”
The owners of the bakery said if Scardina had wanted to purchase a pre-made pink and blue cake, even if he had told them what it meant to him, they would have sold it to him. The owners of the cake shop only object to having to create a custom cake for the intent of celebrating something that contradicts their religious beliefs.
Court hearings in a Colorado trial court began in March and concluded with Phillips being fined $500, the maximum amount allowed, for violating Colorado’s Anti-Discrimination Act.
Alliance Defending Freedom General Counsel Kristen Waggoner, who represented Phillips in court, said they will continue to fight for Phillips’ religious freedoms despite ongoing persecution by LGBT activists. According to Waggoner, this case “represents a disturbing trend: the weaponization of our justice system to ruin those with whom the activists disagree.”
“Jack Phillips serves all people but shouldn’t be forced to create custom cakes with messages that violate his conscience,” Waggoner stated. “We will appeal this decision and continue to defend the freedom of all Americans to peacefully live and work according to their deeply held beliefs without fear of punishment.”